Not too long ago, you had to be a creative professional to justify an expensive laptop with an OLED screen. Many affordable mainstream laptops now come equipped with an OLED screen, so more people can enjoy stellar contrast and vibrant, accurate colors.
How does an OLED panel achieve this goodness? A quick intro: the pixels on an OLED screen can be completely turned off, which means the panel can produce absolute blacks and higher contrast ratios than an LCD screen (where the liquid crystal can only block some of the light). . Even an LCD screen with local dimming it can’t match an OLED’s ability to turn individual pixels on and off. OLED screens also offer a wide color gamut because the primary colors can reach higher saturations that allow the screen to produce more colors. Higher saturation levels lead to more vibrant colors, and with more colors on its palette, an OLED panel can create more accurate colors.
Another advantage? OLED displays have thinner layers than LCD displays and do not require a backlight, allowing for thinner and lighter notebook designs.
Read more: The best laptop deals at Amazon, Best Buy and Newegg
It’s reasonable to think that an OLED is more power efficient than an LCD because you don’t need to turn on a backlight and can completely turn off individual pixels. However, we have found that OLED screens tend to have a negative impact on battery life. They offer decent battery life; You just can’t expect to get a longer runtime from an OLED laptop on top of the highest image quality.
With a basic understanding of the advantages of an OLED laptop, let’s take a look at the best deals I’m seeing right now. I’ve included mainstream laptops that are affordable along with high-powered laptops that are currently being discounted, and a Chromebook. Yes, you can get a cheap Chromebook with an OLED screen. Prices and discounts are valid at the time of writing, and I’ll update this story as sales expire and new deals pop up.
At its asking price of $550, this Asus ZenBook 14 is one of the lowest cost OLED laptops around. It features a 14-inch 16:10 OLED panel with a sharp 2.8K resolution and is rated for an impressive 600 nits of brightness. It’s able to pull off such a low price because the core specs are mid-range at best with a 12th-gen Core i5 CPU, 8GB of RAM, and a 256GB SSD. But if you’re looking for a budget laptop with a beautiful screen, this selling model might fit the bill.
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This top model from Asus is one of the most affordable OLED laptops being sold right now. It has a 15.6-inch OLED screen with Full HD resolution (1,920 x 1,080 pixels). Based on an 11th-generation Core i5 CPU and with 12GB of RAM and a 512GB solid-state drive, it has more memory and twice the storage capacity than you’ll find in many laptops under $1,000. It also has USB Type-A and Type-C ports, saving you from having to carry an adapter. It’s a good deal at its list price of $800 and an even better buy at its current asking price.
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This Asus VivoBook is slightly smaller than the previous unit, but it has a higher resolution display and a newer, more powerful processor. The 14.5-inch OLED screen has a resolution of 2,880 x 1,800 pixels. The laptop is powered by a Core i7-12700H CPU, 12GB of RAM, and a 512GB SSD. The screen is a 16:10 panel for more vertical space and has a 120Hz refresh rate, double the standard 60Hz for smoother images. It’s also rated for a substantial brightness of 550 nits. It’s a good deal and its list price and can occasionally be found on sale for $700.
This high-end Inspiron convertible features a 16-inch OLED touchscreen with 4K Plus resolution and a 16:10 aspect ratio powered by a 12th-gen Core i7 CPU, 16GB of RAM, Nvidia GeForce MX550 graphics and a 512 GB SSD. You also get a 1080p webcam which will allow you to appear clearer in video chats than a 720p camera.
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Lenovo’s latest premium two-in-one convertible features a 14-inch OLED display encased in a slim yet durable metal chassis. This discounted model offers a 12th-gen Core i7 CPU, 16GB of RAM, Intel Iris Xe graphics, and a 512GB SSD. The 14-inch touchscreen has a 2.8K resolution (2880 x 1800 pixels) and can rotate 360 degrees in tablet mode to tap, swipe, and draw with the included active pen.
Read our Lenovo Yoga 9i review.
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The 13.5-inch Specter x360 is one of CNET’s favorite two-in-one convertibles for its premium styling, light weight, and long battery life. This model features a 12th generation Core i7 CPU, 16GB of RAM, and a roomy 1TB SSD. Adding to the Intel Evo goodness, the 13.5-inch display comes into its own here. It’s an OLED touch panel with what HP calls a 3K2K resolution, meaning 3000 x 2000 pixels. The display also has a square 3:2 aspect ratio, giving you more vertical space than wider displays for less scrolling through web pages and documents. It’s $300 off at Best Buy right now and sometimes goes as low as $500.
Read our HP Specter x360 14 review.
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Did you know that you could have an OLED display on a Chromebook? Lenovo’s two-in-one Chromebook Duet 5 is proof that such a thing is possible. It features a 13.5-inch detachable OLED display with a Full HD resolution powered by a Qualcomm Snapdragon processor and is packed with 4GB of RAM and 64GB of onboard storage. It’s a good value even at full price and can often be found for less than $400.
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